Washington D.C.—In response to reports that the Pentagon is considering allowing detainees at Guantanamo Bay the opportunity to visit with family, Congressman Duncan Hunter, a veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, introduced legislation today to prohibit the Secretary of Defense from allowing detainees at the facility to meet with family members.

“Detainees at Guantanamo Bay are there for a reason,” said Congressman Hunter.  “These detainees, some of whom have killed Marines and soldiers or been captured on the battlefield, present a direct threat to Americans everywhere—particularly those in our military undertaking the combat mission in Afghanistan.  And with many of these detainees returning to the fight soon after being released, it’s irresponsible to think that anyone in custody now would refrain from rejoining the enemy. 

“Allowing family members to visit detainees creates unnecessary risk.  First priority must go to protecting U.S. personnel at Guantanamo Bay and the sensitive national security information that continues to be collected at the facility.  Opening its doors to family members will only make our job more difficult and potentially compromise important elements of our nation’s intelligence gathering operation.”